Small Is Now Big: Nano Technology for Electronics
Semiconductor quantum dots (QDs) are nanoparticles that have attracted widespread interest in biology and medicine due to their unique optical and electronic properties. These properties, especially their reduced tendency to photo bleach and the dependence of their fluorescence wavelength on their size, make them suitable for fluorescent probing applications to detect cancer biomarkers in vitro and in vivo in cells/tissues/whole body. There is considerable interest among researchers due to the recent developments in QD technology. QDs have been encapsulated in amphiphilic polymers and bound to tumor-targeting ligands and drug delivery vesicles for targeting, imaging and treating tumor cells. Present efforts are focussed on exploring the massive multiplexing capabilities of the QDs for the simultaneous detection of multiple cancer biomarkers in blood assays and cancer tissue biopsies. These advances in the QD technology have unraveled a great deal of information about the molecular events in tumor cells and early diagnosis of cancer.